Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2000/05/04

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Subject: [Leica] Somewhat OT - Enlarger choice, or adjustment
From: "Walter Levy" <>
Date: Thu, 04 May 2000 17:56:56 -0400

Howdy folks!  I wonder if anyone has suggestions for a good affordable enlarger.  I have an old Beseler 23C that I bought for $200 at a camera show and I'm not very happy with it.  I just cannot seem to get corner-to-corner sharpness, very disappointing after building a new darkroom and shooting all these wonderful Leica (on topic!) negatives.  In the center the prints are perfectly sharp but at the edges the grain turns to mush.  I am using Componon-S enlarging lenses stopped down to F/8 or F/11.

What I'm looking for is:

35mm to 6x7 formats
black and white only (variable contrast)
very even illumination
excellent sharpness corner-to-corner and edge-to-edge
fine focus control
reasonable cost

Alternatively, can someone tell me how to really get my enlarger aligned (assuming that's the problem).  I followed Beseler's instructions, putting a sheet of glass in the negative stage and using a torpedo level) but either it's not accurate enough or I did it wrong, or maybe there's something else wrong.

Is the problem due to curvature of the negative in the carrier?  Do I have to use a glass carrier?

I'm slightly tempted to bag medium format and get a Leitz enlarger!

Well, any advice would be most sincerely appreciated...

Carpe Granulum


Replies: Reply from Mark Rabiner <> (Re: [Leica] Somewhat OT - Enlarger choice, or adjustment)
Reply from "rlb" <> (Re: [Leica] Somewhat OT - Enlarger choice, or adjustment)